Wednesday, January 18, 2012

State Democrats Remain Silent as President Obama Kills Arkansas Jobs

Little Rock, Ark. – Republican Party of Arkansas Communications Director Katherine Vasilos issued the following statement in light of President Barack Obama’s expected announcement that his Administration will reject the Keystone XL pipeline project:

“Hundreds of Arkansas jobs are now on the chopping block thanks to President Obama’s failure to lead on domestic energy production and approve the Keystone pipeline,” said Vasilos. “At a time when the economy desperately needs to be creating jobs, sacrificing 600 Arkansas jobs and 20,000 American jobs for purely political motives is reckless. Yet, state Democrats remain silent as Barack Obama’s economically destructive policies put even more Arkansans out of work. While Arkansas Republicans fight for jobs, Governor Mike Beebe and Democratic members of the General Assembly won’t touch what they call a ‘partisan issue.’ Since when did protecting Arkansas jobs become partisan? For the sake of Arkansas and our nation, we cannot afford four more years of President Obama, who would rather put special interests ahead of getting our economy back on track.”

President Obama Rejects Keystone XL Pipeline
“The State Department on Wednesday will reject the Keystone XL pipeline, multiple sources following the project told POLITICO. The formal announcement is expected at 3 p.m. from Deputy Secretary of State William Burns. Although the permit would be rejected, TransCanada would still be allowed to continue to work on and pitch an alternative route through Nebraska.” (Darren Goode, "W.H. to reject Keystone XL," Politico, 1/18/11)

600 Jobs at Risk Due to the President’s Keystone Rejection
“If the project doesn’t get the required permits, most of Welspun’s 600 jobs could be suspended for a time, he added. ‘It would affect us tremendously if it is not approved,’ Delie said. ‘All this pipe we have in the yard belongs to TransCanada and ... we would be competing with them’ to sell pipe.” (Paul Quinn, "Pipeline delay prompts LR layoffs,” Arkansas Democrat-Gazette, 12/14/11)

60 Arkansas Workers Lose Their Jobs Due to President’s Keystone Delay
“The first tangible signs of a moratorium on the Keystone XL oil pipeline project affecting Arkansas jobs has surfaced. Indian pipeline maker, Welspun Tube, which has a major North American production plant at the Little Rock Port Authority, says it will lay off 60 temporary workers due to the project’s delay.” (Roby Brock, "Welspun Says Keystone Moratorium And Steel Delay Reason For Layoffs," Talk Business, 12/13/11)

The Keystone Pipeline Will Create 20,000 Jobs
“TransCanada’s initial estimate of 20,000 - which it said includes 13,000 direct construction jobs and 7,000 jobs among supply manufacturers - has been widely quoted by lawmakers and presidential candidates.” (Juliet Eilperin and Steven Mufson, “Keystone Pipeline Battle Heating Up,” The Washington Post, 11/6/11)

GOP Legislators Pass Resolution Supporting Keystone Pipeline
“The Arkansas Legislature’s Joint Energy Committee passed a resolution yesterday which supports moving forward on building the Keystone Pipeline, which would allow oil to be transported via pipeline from Canada to refineries in Texas.  The resolution was sponsored by Sen. Jonathan Dismang, R-Beebe and it echoes the statements made by Congressman Tim Griffin earlier this week criticizing President Obama for delaying the pipeline project.” (Jason Tolbert, “Energy Committee Passes Resolution Supporting Keystone Pipeline,” The Tolbert Report, 11/18/11)

Democratic Governor Mike Beebe Calls Keystone XL Pipeline a “Partisan Issue”
“But governor’s spokesman Matt DeCample said while their office is obviously disappointed in the delay, they are not ready to jump into the partisan issue that they feel this has become.” (Jason Tolbert, “Beebe Office Points to September Letter of Support for Keystone Pipeline,” Talk Business, 12/14/11)

State GOP Sends Letter to Governor Beebe Urging Action on Keystone Pipeline
“Today, Republican Party of Arkansas (RPA) Chairman Doyle Webb issued a letter to Governor Mike Beebe asking that he publicly call on President Barack Obama to approve the Keystone XL pipeline in light of recent layoffs at Little Rock-based Welspun Tubular, a major manufacturer of pipeline for the Keystone project.” (Republican Party of Arkansas, Press Release, 12/15/11)

September Letter is Best Governor Beebe Can Do on Keystone Issue
“The recent announcement of layoffs by Welspun here in Arkansas due to the delay of the Keystone Pipeline along with the passage of a bill supporting moving forward with the project by the U.S. House of Representatives has pushed the issue to the forefront of Arkansas politics this week…I asked the governor’s office for a response today and they pointed me to a letter Beebe wrote to Secretary of State Hillary Clinton back in September.” (Jason Tolbert, “Beebe Office Points to September Letter of Support for Keystone Pipeline,” Talk Business, 12/14/11)

Arkansas Invested Millions in Welspun
“Welspun received a $2 million commitment from the Governor’s Quick Action Closing Fund for infrastructure costs. The company has been offered a sales-tax credit for qualifying construction materials, and a 3.9 percent tax rebate on the payroll for jobs created in the next 10 years. (“Welspun to add 230 jobs, invest $30 million Growth in LR ‘swift,’ ‘steady,’ chairman says,” Arkansas Democrat-Gazette, 5/3/10)

Tags: Arkansas, democrats, Barack Obama, kills, jobs, RPA,

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